Apartment Checklist: Things to Look For

Apartment hunting can be fun, exciting, and for some, downright overwhelming. Use this apartment checklist to help you find the best apartment for you.

The fresh carpet smell, the granite countertops, and the luxurious look of hardwood floors may all be on your apartment checklist. But if you’re not careful, these perks may blind you from the not-so-nice aspects of a potential apartment home. When you finally move in, instead of singing “home sweet home,” you may end up screaming, “No, no, no!”

Statistics show that in 2016, 35% of people in the United States — more than 111,000 people — rented homes.

Renting an apartment can feel like a rite of passage for a college student who is finally forsaking dorm life to live like a “real” adult. And it can be an excellent option if you don’t necessarily want to be tied down to a house.

But overlooking important aspects of an apartment home can end up costing you.

We’ve compiled a checklist to help you to find the best apartment for you.

Let’s get started!

Apartment Checklist: Cabinet Check

Sure, the kitchen cabinets may look beautiful and brand new on the outside. But don’t forget to look inside them, too.

Peeking around the inside of your cabinets may quickly tell you if you have a bug infestation on your hands.

Don’t just look around for those creepy crawly invaders who can’t wait to eat your food. Look for their feces as well, which look like pepper.

And be on the lookout for mice droppings, too — small pellets that look like black maggots.

Do your due diligence to make sure that you don’t have any unwanted multi-legged roommates before you sign your lease.

Plug Check

When you finally walk into your dream apartment during a tour, the excitement you experience may feel like sparks.

But those sparks will soon die if you find out your electrical outlets are dead as a dodo. You might even feel like a dodo for not checking your plugs in the first place before moving in.

You use so many items on a daily basis that depend on electricity: your TV, laptop, phone charger, cable box, router, clocks, etc. It’s not enough to make sure that several plugs are present in the apartment to accommodate these items.

They actually need to be functioning; otherwise, they’re useless.

So, always take with you a small item you can use to test your potential future home’s plugs — such as a nightlight.

Sure, the apartment landlord might give you a funny look during your tour, but it’s better than being kept in the dark.

Money Check

Perhaps the most important item to include on your apartment checklist is checking what’s in the lease. You know — that document you’d rather breeze through than actually read when it’s time to sign on the dotted line.

Make sure that if you plan to stay in the apartment for a single year, the lease doesn’t commit you to two years there. And check to see how much your monthly rent will increase with each successive year.

Most importantly, create a budget so that you know you can afford your chosen apartment. You don’t want your rent to make you house poor in the months ahead.

How We Can Help

We offer guidance for those interested in renting or buying in today’s competitive real estate market.

Contact us to find out how we can help you to find your dream home.